Chaos, tempers and sheet metal flew on Sunday afternoon from the Charlotte roval as A.J. Allmendinger scored his first NASCAR victory and the third of his career, all coming on road courses. Bubba Wallace saw his championship hopes vanish with a crash on the back stretch. Kyle Busch's hail mary to advance ended as well with a third place run, while Brad Kesolowski and Ross Chastain were both eliminated as well.
Tyler Reddick moved from 9th in the standings to 7th with an impressive 6th place run after leading 27 laps. He needed to race his way in by finishing higher than Kesolowski. Reddick did one better and gained two spots with the run, setting himself for a chance in the round of 8. William Byron continued the best season of his career with a runner up finish. Byron leads the standings with Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson, Christopher Bell, Chris Buescher and Ryan Blaney will all race for the title over the next four races.
NASCAR heads west to tackle Las Vegas and a driver that will need to step it up is Martin Truex Jr. Truex hasn't finished in the Top 10 since Watkins Glen back in August. His best finish in the playoffs is a 17th place run. Truex still finds himself second in the standings but the margin for error of the next month is slim for the 2017 NASCAR champ and this year's regular season champion.
William Byron heads to Vegas as the favorite. He won at the track back in spring after qualifying 2nd. He has 5 straight Top 20 finishes at Vegas and owns a 5 points lead in the standings over Truex Jr.
My pick to click this weekend is Kyle Larson. It's a busy week for Larson as he will take his rookie orientation test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Thursday in preparation to run next year's Indianapolis 500 for McLaren. Since moving to Hendrick Motorsports, Larson has a win, two second place finishes and a 10th. He also has a pole at Vegas but did crash out of this race one year ago resulting with a 35th place finish.
The green flag flies at 3pm EST on Sunday afternoon. Our contest will be ready to go on Saturday evening after qualifying wraps up. Let us know who you are taking to win on Sunday from the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.